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Hawkshead - Get off the beaten track

What not to miss

Lined with cobbled streets and black beamed Tudor buildings makes visiting the village of Hakwshead a little bit different. There are a large number of shops, cafe’s and traditional pubs situated in the village along with various historical buildings. 

In the center of the village you will find The Beatrix Potter Gallery. This 17th Century building was once the office of her husband and then local solicitor William Heelis. The building has remained largely unaltered since his day and now houses an annually changing exhibition displaying a selection of Beatrix Potter’s original drawings and illustrations and throughout the school holidays readings of her world famous stories. 

Hawkshead is also home to Hawkshead Grammar School, former school of the world famous poet William Wordsworth. Now a museum housing  a unique collection of historic artifacts relating to the ancient School, some of which date back to the sixteenth century. Hawkshead Grammar school is open all year round to visitors to examine at their leisure. 

Food and Drink

The famous Hawkshead Relish Company was born in the heart of Hawkshead making a wonderful selection of relishes, chutneys, marmalades, jams and preserves - all hand made in a 16th Century Barn just one mile outside of the village.

Their shop however is located in the heart of the village. Having started with only a handful of products, the artisan producers now make over 100 and have no signs of stopping anytime soon.

The imaginative and great tasting products have seen Hawkshead Relish winning over 60 Great Taste Awards over the years.

If you’re in the village, pop into the shop and enjoy the tasting table which is available daily to try something new and if you can’t visit the village just now, make sure to check out their online shop and enjoy a taste of Cumbria at home.

If you fancy something sweet we recommend you head over the road to The Little Ice Cream Shop tucked away in the heart of the village where they hand make over 40 flavours on site and serve 22 flavours daily, such as Kendal Mint Cake, Hawkshead Gingerbread, Malteser Crunch and my favourite, Lemon Cheesecake. They also make a range of sorbets, dairy free flavours too and gluten free alternatives, so no one has to miss out! Visiting out of season? Don’t worry, in Winter they also make delicious waffles! 

Walking Nearby

The small fell of Latterbarrow is quite prominent above lovely Blelham Tarn, and can be reached from High Wray and also from the only car park in Hawkshead. The walk begins on the roadside for a short while and you will then make your way through the hamlet of Colthouse and begin a steady climb through fields. This path is steep but short, and once the summit is reached the views over Windermere are splendid. 

Distance: 7.4km (4.6 miles)

Time: 1 hr 50 mins

Where to park

Hawkshead is still the same collection of higgledy-piggledy houses and archways and cars are banned from the centre of the village. There is one large, pay and display car park on the outskirts of the village, postcode: LA22 0NT. All car park charges go towards keeping the National Park special for the future.